Following every storm comes a rainbow and the opportunity to turn a negative into a positive. Emerging country artist, Chase Bryant known for his top-charting hits “Take It On Back” and “Little Bit of You,” is one of many individuals who has become a victim of depression.
While struggling with his mental health, the beloved musician was blessed with a second chance at life after a failed suicide attempt. In true singer/songwriter fashion, the Texas native turned to his acoustic guitar to find himself and to channel his emotions through his love of music and storytelling.
After leaving his heart and soul on the writing table and working alongside award-winning producer, Jon Randall – his 12-track debut album Upbringing was born. Although he has a long list of chilling and heart-wrenching ballads on the back-burner, he decided to use his voice to carefully craft upbeat tunes that were inspired by the brightest moments that peeked out during his darkest times.
With a clear mind and a fun game of wordplay, Bryant penned 10 out of the 12 honest tracks at Austin’s famed Arlyn Studios. The comeback star shares the story behind when he kissed a girl at a “Red Light” and the memorable Friday nights when he raised a “Cold Beer” with his good ole buddies.
“I feel like God gave me a second chance. I’m just taking it all one step at a time,” says the resilient artist in an exclusive Country Now interview. “Making music I love first is most important. I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.”
Although Bryant removed himself from the 10-year town to focus on his health, his loyal community stood by and waited patiently for new music to arrive that emphasized the traditional country sound, and his Keith Urban-like guitar skills that captured their attention back in the day.
Upbringing is here! I couldn't be more proud of this project and am incredibly thankful it's out for you all to enjoy! Thanks for hanging in there these past few years on this journey with me. Love you all. This is #upbringing.
— Chase Bryant (@chasebryant) July 16, 2021
To go along with Bryant’s vulnerable LP, the go-getter is slowly stepping back into the limelight but with determination to keep up the positive momentum. Country Now recently caught up with Chase Bryant to chat about his new record Upbringing, how he became a mental health advocate, his experience performing at the Grand Ole Opry, and what’s to come.
Read on to find out more about Chase Bryant in this exclusive Q&A below…
For our readers to get to know you a little bit more, can you share your backstory?
I grew up in a small town in Texas called Orange Grove. I came from a musical family. I’ve been kicking around playing music my whole life. I knew it was what I was going to set out to do since I was a child! At 16, I signed a record deal out in LA and started my career. Shortly after, I moved to Nashville and started writing for the fantastic, Barbara Orbison. After a decade of being there, I decided to move back home to Texas, where I recorded my brand new album.
Who are your main musical influences?
Gosh, that’s tough. There truly are so many. Tom Petty, John Mellencamp, Vince Gill, Steve Wariner, Keith Urban, Daniel Lanois, Tom Waits, Fleetwood Mac, Jay Joyce, Eric Church, & so many more. I feel terrible not listing them all!
How does your debut album Upbringing represent who you are as a singer and songwriter?
It just gets down to my core. This is as genuine as I can be. This stylistically is what I love in music. However, there are so many types of sonics in music that I love. I’m not sure if I could do the same thing 10 times.
As fans listen to your 12-track collection for the very first time, how would you like them to feel?
I want them to feel what they want to feel. I don’t want to push anything on anyone!
What was it like working with award-winning Jon Randall on Upbringing, and did you receive any valuable advice from him?
He’s amazing. He’s a brother to me. He’s an incredible artist in his own right and one of my all-time favorite songwriters. I just learned more and more how to be ok being myself with JR!
Joe Bonamassa joined you on stage at the Opry to play “Cold Beer,” could you tell us about this star-studded collaboration? Will you be teaming up with Bonamassa anytime soon?
Joe is excellent and a very accurate guitar player. You can’t not like the guy. He’s a gem. I don’t know, but I think we should…
You recently played at the Grand Ole Opry. Could you tell us about your experience at the legendary concert hall?
It’s always an honor to play the Opry. That’s a staple as a country artist. That’s one place I don’t take for granted.
Do you have any behind-the-scenes secrets about your summertime-inspired music video for “Cold Beer” ?
Yeah, my girlfriend shot that whole thing on my iPhone. Technology is weird.
What have you learned about yourself while penning your debut record, Upbringing?
I’ve learned about myself as a whole, really. It’s the first time I’ve really sat down and had a conversation with my heart and just let it speak.
Can fans expect to see you perform your new material live and in-person in the near future?
Oh yea, absolutely! I’m so excited to try these songs live on a crowd and see which ones to never play again, and which ones will stick! Haha.
You are now a mental health advocate. So, how do you maintain your mental health while building your music career?
It’s tough… If we are honest. This is not an easy profession. I just try to give myself adequate amounts of rest and never do anything that doesn’t feel right to do. Slowing down is a big part of it all.
The universe gave you a second chance. How do you plan on making this world your oyster?
I feel like God gave me a second chance. I’m just taking it all one step at a time. Making music I love first is most important. I don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.
You recently took to social media and shared that your track “Think About That” was the song that inspired you to make the record. Could you share the inspiration or story behind this ballad?
That acoustic melody really struck a chord in me, even more than lyrically at first. It just dug aside out of me that I hadn’t known yet. Honestly, it’s the simplicity in that song. I love pictures. I love painting pictures lyrically. That song just makes you feel the past. I’m not sure where exactly it came from, other than seeing a Tom Petty Wildflowers art tattoo. That drove me mad thinking about how to write that. Here it is now.
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How would you say you’ve grown as an artist since beginning your music career?
Age…that’s really it. I mean, with age, things get better, I firmly believe.
If you could collaborate with any country artist, who would it be and why?
That’s tough. Really tough. Hmm. I’ve always dreamt of recutting the entire See What You Wanna See record by Radney Foster. He doesn’t get enough credit! What a work of art that was.
What is one thing you are passionate about, outside of country music?
Cooking. I love food. There’s so much passion behind a good meal.
What are some of your goals for the rest of 2021?
Make another record here pretty quick. Continue on the right path, and find more joy in life daily. I couldn’t ask for more. Thanks, guys!
Fans can keep up with Chase Bryant on Instagram.